Huge 'smart' shift seen in Mideast
Dubai, March 20, 2014
Smart wear, e-Education and e-Healthcare are set to see a remarkable shift this year in the Middle East as new technologies become commercially available and are adopted, said a report.
Deloitte’s second annual Middle East Technology, Media and Telecommunications (TMT) Predictions report revealed the latest trends and emerging issues shaping the TMT industries across the Middle East this year and beyond.
The predictions are built around hundreds of discussions with industry executives analysts and commentators, along with consumer interviews. They were also tested with clients and industry analysts.
The report pointed out that smart glasses, fitness bands and watches should sell about 10 million units this year, generating $3 billion in revenues across the world.
Student registrations in Massive Open Online Courses (MOOCs) will be up 100 per cent compared to 2012 to over 10 million courses, but the low completion rates will mean that less than 0.2 per cent of all tertiary education-equivalent courses completed in 2014 will be MOOCs, it said.
The growing awareness of online education will force educational institutions to increase investment in this area, drive more acceptance of online education as it becomes accredited and increase adoption by corporate training groups.
The Middle East could see the rise of the Arabian MOOC in new local platforms, in partnership with local professors and universities, which will be attended by more Arab users than in 2013, said the report.
E-Visits by doctors will amount to 100 million globally, saving more than $5 billion when compared to the cost of in-person doctor visits, it said.
In the GCC, the e-Visits market which is about $2 to $3 billion could increase by as much as $230 to $310 million this year.
The Middle East’s usage of e-Visits will be gradual as implementation of national e-Health programmes in countries like Saudi Arabia are planned over a 10-year period. Meanwhile, mobile health will emerge as a more disruptive force in the region’s healthcare system, said the report.
Small- to medium- sized enterprises (SMEs) in the Middle East are set to increase their ICT services expenditure by over $2 billion to hit $22 billion this year, up 10 per cent compared to last year, it said.
ICT spending by SMEs in the region will be just over 23 per cent driven by ongoing expansion in the number of SMEs and their need for key ICT services, such as web-presence, e-commerce and cloud computing.
The report stated that the pay-TV market in the Middle East is small, but growth reflects a developing appetite for it in the region. The viewers in the region have adopted online video in addition to conventional television, showing a market potential for subscription video-on-deman (SVOD) as a secondary viewing service.
Meanwhile, the value of premium region-specific sports rights in the Middle East are expected to increase by at least 15 to 20 per cent, exceeding the 14 per cent rise of all premium sports rights predicted globally.
The region-specific sports rights are set to outgrow those from American and European leagues in percentage terms, even though American and European leagues will maintain most of their overall share of the Middle East’s premium sports rights in terms of value, said the report.
Region-specific sports properties are growing faster, but compared to their European and American league counterparts are still significantly undervalued. With very limited room for Middle East broadcasters to profitably exploit the broadcast rights of top international leagues and with higher growth prospects, local leagues will bridge part of this gap, it said.
Instant messaging services on mobile phones (MIM) will carry more than twice the volume of messages sent globally via a short messaging service (SMS). Despite the burgeoning volumes of messages carried over MIM platforms, globally SMS will generate more than $100 billion, equivalent to approximately 50 times the total revenues from all MIM services.
In the Middle East, the adverse impact of MIM on operators’ SMS and MMS revenues will be in the range of five to six percent in the next five years as higher smartphone penetration makes MIM more ubiquitous in the region than anywhere else in the world.
Coupled with increased multimedia sharing in the region, MIM is a stronger driver for data consumption and can expand new revenue streams for Middle East operators, said the report.
Santino Saguto, partner and TMT Leader at Deloitte Middle East, said: “Deloitte published a version of the predictions with specific relevance to the Middle East region. We have taken a more in-depth view on the region’s most important themes, such as education, healthcare, small-mid size business, sports and how the most cutting edge innovations such as wearables could help business leaders and government authorities drive the Middle East’s evolution and growth.”
“In light of the latest trends seen in the Middle East TMT space, we have also sought to highlight and reflect on key challenges which could impact the pace of the region’s wider adoption of new technologies and their development across TMT sectors,” added Saguto. - TradeArabia News Service